Three years after the federal government pumped nearly half a billion dollars into Palo Alto-based Tesla Motors, the electric car company today will begin rolling its first mass production vehicle, the Model S, off its factory line.
The delivery of the Model S, a four-dour sedan, is weeks ahead of schedule and will be celebrated by numerous business and government leaders, including Governor Jerry Brown, and be streamed online here.
“For three years we have developed this car from the ground up with persistence and passion,” according to the Tesla website. “Thank you to those who believed it could be done. You're the reason we're here today, delivering the car of the 21st century. We won't stop until every car on the road is electric.”
The Model S, unveiled in 2009, has already been reserved by 10,000 people, and the company plans to produce 20,000 per year starting in 2013.
The car is the first premium level all-electric sedan, and accelerates from 0 to 60 in less than six seconds with a total range of 265 miles.
The body is aluminum, and the company claims the vehicle’s range is the longest of any production electric car in the world. It seats five adults and two children in optional rear-facing jump seats, and includes a 17” touchscreen on the dash, complete with 3G connectivity. The battery back options include 40, 60 or 85 kWh, and can be charged from any conventional outlet.
Palo Alto Patch will be inside Tesla’s Fremont factory this afternoon and will have a full report tonight.